Ashish Pradhan

An Engineer with a Post Graduate Degree in Management Studies, Ashish has close to 30 years of experience in the Packaging industry. Ashish has completed Executive Education from Harvard and INSEAD, France. He also holds a Diploma in International Trade, from the Indian Institute of Materials Management and a Diploma in Packaging from the Institute of Packaging, UK.

Ashish took over as CEO Siegwerk India in 2016 and was promoted as President, Siegwerk India and Greater China in 2019. He has been responsible for growing the Siegwerk business in the Indian sub-continent and turning around Siegwerk China into a profitable entity. He has brought in a vibrant culture change to the Organisations in India and China.

Ashish assumed the role of President Asia for Siegwerk on 1st January 2021, which includes the South East Asia business, along with India and Greater China.

Before joining Siegwerk in 2015, Ashish served in senior positions with companies such as Huhtamaki, Henkel and International Paper. Ashish’s interests are reading, swimming, trekking and following sports.

Our Exclusive Interview:

1. How do you keep your team motivated?

There are three things that I constantly do with my team 

  1. Create an environment of psychological safety. 
  2. Acknowledge, appreciate and (decision on) amend every action/input. 
  3. Keep the challenge and fun alive in all my interactions.

2. What is the incident/ case study that comes to your mind when it was crucial to you to take the lead in solving it? How did you solve it? How did you ensure that it was implemented?

When I took over the responsibility of China, the business there was not doing very well and the team morale was down and we had compliance problems. I stayed in China for an extended period of time to solve these issues. There were three steps to how I tackled this and found a solution. 1. Listening to gain understanding 2. Reflecting, analysing and prioritising 3. Delegating with proper control systems to ensure that whatever needs to be implemented is being implemented.  

3. Have you struggled with work-life balance? How did you handle it? How do you handle it even now?

Work is part of life and they cannot be looked at as two separate things. When you enjoy your work it becomes an important part of your life and something that defines you. The key to enjoy life is to be in the moment 100%. I don’t think of work when I am with family and friends and I don’t think about stuff outside of work when I am working. 

4. How would you describe your leadership style?

I would say –  I’m authentic and true to the job. I stay firm on my convictions and don’t compromise on my values. I’m balanced between people orientation and task orientation. That in a nutshell is my leadership style  

5. What are you most proud of in your organisation? How did you go about achieving it and ensuring its sustainability? 

I am very proud of the Culture that has been built in my organisation. We live by TACTS which stands for Trust, Appreciation, Conceptual Clarity, Transparency and Self Discipline. The way to sustain any value is to demonstrate it and make it a part of the organisational ethos.  We demonstrate these set of values in every interaction with our people. 

6. How does competition affect your strategies towards your organisation – for productivity, for turnover, for employees?  

We don’t operate in isolation. We operate in a market which is competitive in nature. However there is a certain strategic direction which is dictated by your value system and how you see the market and what you believe in. For example there are some companies that stand for adding value, there are some companies that stand for low cost, there are companies that add more features, there are some companies that give service and add to the price, so there are different ways of how you do business. You have to understand what resonates with you as your value system which then gets translated to the strategy that reflects that value system. How you communicate this strategy to the customer is influenced by your competition.

Know the Person

  1. Money to you is an enabler.  
  2. Your favourite film is Dewar. 
  3. Your favourite food is  Grilled Salmon. 
  4. Your favourite film star (male) is Amitabh Bachchan. 
  5. Your favourite film star (female) is Waheeda Rehman.
  6. Your favourite holiday destination is Sri Lanka.
  7. Friendship to you is unconditional acceptance 
  8. The person you admire the most is no one
  9. Your dream is to find myself 
  10. Your best-kept secret is still a secret